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- KurzbeschreibungEssay from the year 2010 in the subject Politics - International Politics - Region: Western Europe, grade: 1,0, University of Wales, Aberystwyth (Department of International Politics), language: English, comment: Passed with distinction ('Work that shows a considerable degree of critical thought, flair and independence, together with sound factual knowledge' Master's Handbook, Department of International Politics) , abstract: Some argue tat most major conflicts are triggered by internal, elite-level activities. At the same time peace processes are often elite-driven with a relatively small number of people responsible for making final decisions. The following analysis examines different attempts in Northern Ireland and the Basque Country to contribute sustainably to a peace process on a political elite-level. It will be shown that the success of leadership and political risk-taking by elites is highly dependent on the circumstances. It will be shown that courageous elite decisions are doomed to have little effect if basic requirements are lacking. Simultaneously, even if the preconditions seem to be appropriate peace processes can fail due to a lack of commitment on the side of political leaders.The conflicts in Northern Ireland and the Basque Country show up to a certain extent notable similarities in their initial situations. In both cases nationalist movements tried/try to alter the state of autonomy in one part of the country. Both conflicts led to cruel violence and left numerous civilians dead. Both conflicts took and take politically place within the particular province and between the province and the federal government of the nation state (Spain/United Kingdom and Ireland). The nationalist movements in both cases are divided between a radical party (Batasuna/Sinn Fein) and a more moderate one (PNV/SDLP). These similarities compose a good starting point for a comparative analysis.Regarding the generalizability of the findings, two central restrictions must be made. First the small number of cases (only two) discussed in this paper limit the possibility to draw universal conclusions. In statistical terms the extent of the sample is insufficient to make a valid statement about the relation of the variables leadership and political risk taking and development or outcome of a peace process . Another crucial point is that the variables in the two cases are not perfectly independent from each other as political decisions made in Northern Ireland are thought to have had an influence on the political sphere and thus on the peace process in general in the Basque Country.
- AutorStefan Vedder
- Seiten20 Seiten
- Gewicht45 g
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